Mark Wingfield — Proof of Light
(Moonjune MJR071, 2015, CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 2015-04-28
I first became aware of guitarist Mark Wingfield through I Walked into the Silver Darkness, a collaboration with acoustic guitar innovator Kevin Kastning, where Wingfield’s tasteful electric playing created a very nice contrast with Kastning’s resonant natural sounds. Proof of Light finds him in a more typical setting for an electric guitarist: at the lead of a jazz trio. Yaron Stavi (upright bass) and Asaf Sirkis (drums) complete the lineup, both of them veterans of the jazz world, with credits ranging from John Abercrombie and Larry Coryell to Phil Manzanera and Robert Wyatt. By going the route of using acoustic bass (though I'd swear I hear electric in a few spots), Wingfield positions his sound clearly on the jazz side of the fence, while his playing is inventive enough (both in the notes he chooses and the effects he uses to modify the sound) to appeal to rock guitar aficionados as well. I mentioned Terje Rypdal and Bill Frisell in my review of the Kastning duet, as well as Dennis Rea, and here I’ll add John Abercrombie — suffice it to say Wingfield is a consummate craftsman as well as a real artist, with superb dynamics and a supple touch. I really love his tone, so smooth at times, edgy at others, and he bends notes in a very original way. The is excellent stuff, another stunning guitar album in the Moonjune catalog. If you love guitar music but aren’t a jazz fan, give it a try; if you’re a jazz fan but not a traditionalist, Proof of Light should also be a big win.
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more
Wolfgang Dauner RIP – Pianist Wolfgang Dauner, one of the pioneers of both European free jazz and jazz rock, has died at the age of 84. With his own groups and with the United Jazz+Rock Ensemble, his playing and compositions were a prominent presence in European jazz from the mid-60s until just recently. » Read more
Michael Allison RIP – Michael Allison, who since 1997 has been recording as Darshan Ambient, passed away on January 9th after a long and brave battle with cancer. He has been at at the forefront of the new ambient/electronic music scene, with over eighteen releases to his credit. » Read more